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Conservative Picks for the Florida Primary

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Conservative Picks for the Florida Primary

Florida definitely stands apart from other states in the South. It actually sends Conservatives to DC, to the House that is. The Republican Party is gaining a lot of strength in Florida, similar to Wisconsin. The GOP knows how to win elections in this traditional swing state. Now the predicament becomes: who will win the battle for the GOP’s soul? Conservatives are poised to make gains this primary season. Leftists are poised for setbacks to their blue wave. A successful campaign in 2018 could empower Florida to be a red state in presidential elections to come. For this reason, some tradeoffs were allowed for Conservative Picks. Rick Scott betrayed the party, but in 2016, the Floridians forgave Marco Rubio for his professional shortcomings. Perhaps, in order to remove Nelson, the Florida Conservatives need to forgive Rick Scott. There is a larger battle that Conservatives can win, among the House races that can change the state’s politics for the next decade. Florida is poised to gain at least one or two Congressional seats in the next Census. It would be beneficial, if Conservatives are accustomed to winning by this time.

Best Picks: Greg Steube, Matt Gaetz, Ross Spano
Worst Picks: Greg Buck, Brian Mast, Carlos Curbelo
Best Races: District 7, District 15, District 17
Worst Races: District 18

US Senate

A likable candidate can end Bill Nelson’s long tenure in the DC swamp. It sucks to admit it but that candidate is Governor Rick Scott. In 2016, the Republicans rationalized that Marco Rubio was the best chance to maintain the Florida Senate seat, particularly in an election they did not think they would fare as well. Nevertheless, the GOP won this race in Florida, by over 700000 votes, in a higher turnout election than Nelson’s last win in 2012. 2012 was a bad election for Republicans, losing this race by double digits. 10 points is a hefty task. Rick Scott has viability, in that he outperformed the polls in his narrow victory in 2014. This was a lower turnout election, which is worrisome, but he is an organized candidate. The biggest downside to Rick Scott is that he is not a strong Conservative. On guns, he flopped. Still, ousting a three term Senator with a Liberty Score of 0 needs to be done. If Rick Scott can do that, the Senate will be better off.

Conservative Pick: Rick Scott

District 1

Matt Gaetz is in his first term and he seems like a new addition to the Conservative movement. He has opponents, but Gaetz deserves a second term.

Conservative Pick: Matt Gaetz

District 2

Neal Dunn is a first term RINO. He is unopposed.

District 3

Ted Yoho is a somewhat decent Congressman. He has blemishes on his record but is not a RINO. He has no serious opponent.

Conservative Pick: Ted Yoho

District 4

After 1 term, John Rutherford has shown to be a RINO. He has no opponent.

District 5

Virginia Fuller is the only Republican running in this race.

District 6

Now this is an interesting race. Three challengers vie for the nomination. Fred Costello is a former state rep with a lot of local endorsements. He also appears to be the weakest candidate. John Ward comes off strong as a Conservative with an emphasis on repealing Obamacare and balancing the budget. Michael Waltz is the other strong candidate in this race. His platform also self describes him as a Constitutional Conservative, but states replacing Obamacare as a priority and nothing about reducing debt. Ward is more Conservative, but doesn’t come off as strong or likable. Democrats already have a million dollar candidate, so this race can’t be screwed up. There isn’t enough evidence to suggest that Ward would blow this seat.

Conservative Pick: John Ward

District 7

State Rep. Mike Miller and businessman Scott Sturgill face off in this primary. Mike Miller has a decent record in the Florida House. He did not cave on his protection of the 2nd Amendment when Rick Scott did. Strugill is running on a seemingly hardline fiscal platform, but there appears to be no other signs of Conservatism than that. Miller has a track record of standing up in tough times, and that can’t be ignored.

Conservative Pick: Mike Miller

District 8

Bill Posey is a solid Conservative in the House. He is unopposed.

District 9

Wayne Liebnitzki is the only Republican on the ballot.

District 10

There are no Republicans running

District 11

Daniel Webster is not quite a RINO. He is unopposed.

District 12

Gus Bilirakus is an unchallenged RINO.

District 13

Brad Sostack comes off as more of a Trump populist on his twitter. His opponent Greg Buck seemed fine until he embraced an endorsement from the Tamba Bay Times, the leftist propaganda arm repsonsible for Polifact‘s fake fact checking. Embracing Florida’s leftist rag’s approval makes Brad Sostack the pick. Their article endorsing Buck describes him as:

Brad Sostack, 36, of St. Petersburg is a first-time candidate who describes himself as a pro-Trump, fiscally conservative Republican. He is a military veteran who supports the Second Amendment, tax cuts and restrictions on abortion.

This came after they stated that Buck was soft on DACA.

Conservative Pick: Brad Sostack

District 14

There are no Republicans running in this race.

District 15

This race is wide, but the strongest candidates come down to Neil Combee and Ross Spano. Immediately Spano comes off as the more Conservative pick. Combee also has the endorsement of the Tampa Bay Times. They refer to him as a more practical and experienced candidate. This indicates that he will spend as he pleases. Spano on the other hand is a solid Conservative in the Florida House. In a desperate hour, he defended the 2nd Amendment when Republicans failed. He is embarrassed by the lack of Obamacare repeal and is strong on cutting spending.

Conservative Pick: Ross Spano

District 16

Vern Buchanan is an incumbent RINO. He is unchallenged.

District 17

Tim Rooney, thankfully isn’t running. This vacant red seat has attracted a field of candidates, but leading the pack are Julio Gonzales and Greg Steube. Both seem like decent Republican candidates. A huge separating factor, however, are the endorsements. The NRA, House Freedom Fund, and Republican Liberty Caucus have allgiven the thumbs up to Greg Steube. Meanwhile RINOs such as Marco Rubio and Conservatives such as Andy Harris, of the Freedom Caucus, have shown support for Julio Gonzales. Both would likely be above average, but Steube is less risky on policy than Gonzales.

Conservative Pick: Greg Steube

District 18

Brian Mast is already a RINO after one term. He has two opponents. Mark Freeman ran and lost in 2016. Dave Cummings comes off as the most Conservative candidate in this race. He’s compassionate about the environment without delving into regulations and strong on defending the 1st Amendment.

Conservative Pick: Dave Cummings

District 19

Francis Rooney is an unchallenged RINO.

District 20

There are no Republicans in this race.

District 21

There are no Republicans in this race.

District 22

The right candidate could flip this seat. Democrat Ted Deutch doesn’t have as large of a war chest as other incumbents, and the deficit to overcome for Republicans is only withing single digits. Three Republicans are running. The first one is Nicholas Kimaz. Kimaz comes off as a decent human being with a distaste for PC. But it seems doubtful he would reduce spending. The strongest candidate appears to be Javier Manjarres. He’s Rubio backed, along with many Floridian politicians. But his policies are basic, and his stance on illegal immigration is worrisome. Eddison Walters could also be a decent pick here. He seems like the most Conservative, but least serious. Javier is also most liekly of the three to flip the seat. This race should embrace the strongest, most serious candidate.

Conservative Pick: Javier Manjarres

District 23

This is Debbie Wassermann Schultz’s seat. Hoping that third time’s the charm is true is Joe Kaufman. Perhaps it might be if he can make Schultz seem as incompetent and corrupt as she is. Debbie’s corruption is a huge tenant of his campaign, and that is the only way a Republican can flip this seat. Kaufman would have 50,000 votes to gain and the plummeting reputation of his opponents, paired with his ballot recognition enables him to do that. Another challenger is Carlos Reyes. He has a rather populist style campaign. It doesn’t seem like he’s a super conservative guy. Lastly, there is Carla Spalding. She ran independent against Brian Mast. She employs populist language of an independent while touting support for Trump’s wall and a number of his policies. Her stances are common sense, but very vague. There is no indication she would reduce spending.

Conservative Pick: Joe Kaufman

District 24

There are no Republicans in this race.

District 25

Mario Diaz-Balart is a hardcore RINO. He is unopposed.

District 26

Carlos Curbelo is a serious RINO. He is opposed by Souraya Faas. She is definitely to the right of Curbelo and likely also right of Trump. This is probably the seat most likely to flip blue.

Conservative Pick: Souraya Faas

District 27

A lot of Republicans are running in the Miami-Dade district. This is a vacated red seat that offers a chance to upgrade. This seat is also possible for a blue flip considering Hillary won the District. However the right candidate can hold the seat. That candidate might be Maria Elvira Salazar. Her protect prosper and strengthen campaign themes feature a weak opposition to abortion as well as an emphasis on improving infrastructure. She may not be a serious conservative, but she is also seeking to replace a hardcore RINO of three decades with a Liberty Score of 29. If she does no worse and keeps the seat red, then perhaps it is worth it to mitigate and block a Blue Wave.

Conservative Pick: Maria Elvira Salazar

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Culture and Religion

17 years later, Paul Washer’s shocking message still holds true

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17 years later Paul Washers shocking message still holds true

In 2002, Pastor Paul Washer delivered a message to around 5,000 young people. It has become one of the fiery Southern Baptist’s mostly widely-heard sermons because in it, we hear a very disturbing reality to most who proclaim to be Christians. Some simply aren’t doing it right.

He’s been criticized for the sermon. Some say he’s making it too complicated. Others say he’s scaring people away from the faith by making it seem too difficult. But this teaching is based on one of the most important teachings of Jesus Christ in all the Bible:

Matthew 7:13-27

13 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:

14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

16 Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?

17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.

18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.

19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.

21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.

22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?

23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:

25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.

26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:

27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.

I’ve heard many teach on these verses and I’ve taught myself on the strait and narrow. It’s frightening to some because it was intended to be, and Washer’s declarations to these impressionable young people is clear. But it wasn’t nice. It wasn’t kind. It wasn’t inclusive. It didn’t fit in with today’s version of common pastoral messages.

The need for constant repentance and ongoing belief must never be understated.

Sometimes, the need to be “nice” from the pulpit must be replaced by the true need to be honest. That’s what Washer does in this famous teaching. I strongly encourage everyone to spend an hour hearing it.

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Conservatism

Why Tomi Lahren’s abortion view harms American conservatism

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Why Tomi Lahrens abortion view harms American conservatism

Democrats are unambiguous and united in their view of abortion. It wasn’t always this way. As recently as a decade ago, there were a good number of pro-life Democrats winning elections and expressing their views as pundits.

Today, they don’t exist.

Republicans aren’t so repulsed by the pro-abortion people in their midst. It’s understandable that as a party that’s less focused on individual issues, one can be a Republican without checking off all the various boxes. This is fine. What’s not fine is for breaks in the ranks of conservatives. There are certain things that must remain universal among those who claim to embrace conservatism, especially among those who speak for conservatives.

Fox Nation’s Tomi Lahren is one of them. She claims to be a conservative, but she’s pro-choice. That fact, by itself, is understandable because the issue is a polarizing one in which people can be swayed to one side based on personal experience. It’s not like taxes which warrant universal scorn from conservatives. There are gun-toting, tax-hating, pro-choice conservatives.

But there’s a bigger problem with Lahren’s perspective. She’s not just attacking the Alabama abortion bill and pro-life perspectives in general. She’s doing so with an argument that flies in the face of reality.

Do we think government is the answer? No. In fact, one of the most appealing parts about the Alabama abortion bill is that it represents the first true opportunity for the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade. When it reaches the Supreme Court (and it almost certainly will) it gives us the first glimpse of how the current makeup of the court will react. In fact, the makeup of the court could actually be better if one of the left-leaning Justices retires soon.

Once Roe v. Wade is out of the way, we can finally express the truly conservative aspect of federalism that should have never been taken away – the states’ rights to determine their own healthcare laws.

If Tomi Lahren doesn’t like the abortion ban, that’s fine. Her choice. But to defend her choice by insinuating a challenge to Roe v. Wade is somehow an attack on limited-government tenets is false and harms conservatism.

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Guns and Crime

Thomas Massie exposes the many problems with Red Flag Gun Laws

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Thomas Massie exposes the many problems with Red Flag Gun Laws

Representative Thomas Massie (R-KY) has been a staunch proponent of the 2nd Amendment throughout his career in Washington DC. This makes him an opponent to Red Flag Gun Laws which are spreading across the states. Colorado recently passed their version, bringing the total up to 15.

As we’ve documented numerous times, Red Flag Gun Laws are a direct attack on the 2nd and 4th Amendments. Depending on the version of the law, citizens can have their firearms forcibly removed from them by law enforcement when a judge decrees they may be a threat to themselves or others based on requests by people who know the victim. It’s important to understand that these laws are not based on anyone committing a crime. They are based on a feeling that someone may commit a crime.

It’s like the movie Minority Report, only without psychics. Gun owners’ liberties can be encroached based on the government’s “future crimes division.”

In this video, Massey gets to the heart of the matter by talking to Colorado Weld County Sheriff Steve Reams and Dr. John R. Lott of Crime Prevention Research Center. This is an important video for #2A proponents across the nation.

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